Friday, June 6, 2008

Dallas Debating Walkable Neighborhoods in the WSJ

and my comment on it (link).

yes, they’re walking in dallas and i’m one of them. as a professional urban designer, i moved downtown and got rid of my car as an experiment to see if its possible.
CarFree in Big D Blog
the intent as described in the very first post, is to see how far along downtown dallas revitalization has come, but more importantly, whether its possible to live the way one wants, and in my case, that is the freedom from the automobile.
the “it’s hot in dallas” argument holds little water. in fact, it is often more uncomfortable in DC during the summer than in Dallas, because of the humidity and Brookings cited DC as the MOST walkable. the remainder of the year, the weather in dallas is perfect. the fact of the matter, is that land uses, and the design of them, are a direct result of the transportation system established. in dallas, and most sun belt cities, it is the highway and arterial system that encouraged sparse development, and in turn the same system is choked by traffic and the people are choked by the off-gassing of that transpo system. there is no building out of traffic either. what is required is a demand side solution that reduces the load on the current road network while establishing efficient public transpo options that serve as many people as
possible. the next issue to examine is the ROI of transpo costs. real estate is on fire at every existing and future DART station location, thus raising land value and tax return while improving quality of life.